GRANT SEALS RE­TURN WITH A VIC­TORY

Motor Sport News - - Racing Reports -

Beaten by Rob Wain­wright by 0.010s over two races here last sea­son, 2012 His­toric For­mula Ford cham­pion Cal­lum Grant re­turned the com­pli­ment in Satur­day’s epic Scholar En­gines-sup­ported race – the high­light of the HSCC’S an­nual visit to Snet­ter­ton.

Red-flagged af­ter Tony Hel­li­well’s Mer­lyn vaulted Michael Rich­ings’ Alexis at Mon­treal on lap one, it proved a fierce gun­fight be­tween Grant, Wain­wright and 2013 champ Sam Mitchell, break­ing a 23-month sab­bat­i­cal. Benn Til­ley, who again set fastest lap, was clos­ing when the flag fell on a short­ened restart.

Wain­wright tri­umphed in Sun­day morn­ing’s se­quel – from which Grant re­tired af­ter his throt­tle jammed open in the heat of bat­tle with Rob and Sam – set­ting a cork­ing Pre-1972 lap record as he hared away from Mitchell and Til­ley.

Without the pres­sure of points-chas­ing, Mitchell won the fun fi­nale, man­ag­ing the gap to Grant who started from the back but was sec­ond and clos­ing in­side four laps. Will Nuthall joined them on the podium as Danny Stanzl pipped dad Kevin for fourth.

Re­duced to a one-hour Guards Tro­phy ‘sprint’ af­ter a lowly en­try the Au­tosport Three Hours had Chevrons in the fray for the first time since 2013. Steve Boult­bee Brooks and Rob Bee­bee drove their ex-lord An­gus Cly­des­dale B8 beau­ti­fully to claim vic­tory af­ter chal­lenger Greg Thorn­ton pit­ted his newly-re­stored ex-digby Mart­land ex­am­ple with gear­box is­sues.

A late safety car pe­riod [to re­cover Will Goff ’s Lo­tus Elan, which shed a wheel mid-coram] re­united the field, with a slower car sep­a­rat­ing each of the top three in the queue. As Bee­bee de­servedly won the sin­gle-lap dash to the che­quer, Dan Cox gunned reign­ing Guards ti­tlist Mike Gar­diner’s TVR Grif­fith past Nick Thomp­son’s ex-chris Skeap­ing Chevron B6, with Sean Mc­clurg up, as they lunged for the line.

Ed Mor­ris scorched John Dav­i­son’s ‘Gold Bug’ Elan clear of its small-ca­pac­ity Pre-’66 GT ri­vals, set­ting up a fine fourth over­all ahead of Adrian and James Rus­sell’s Elan. Sixth was the Ginetta G16 of Pa­trick Ward-booth/iain Mcdon­ald who re­ceived the Peter Swinger Tro­phy [in mem­ory of the ’60s com­peti­tor] for their spirit.

The Archie Scott Brown Tro­phy ’50s sportscars race had a sting in its tail, for hav­ing blasted past pole­man Roberto Gior­danelli’s ex-bill Pol­lack Dean Van Lines Lis­ter-chevro­let in his self-built fac­sim­ile, Mark Lewis gy­rated at Mur­ray’s. Un­de­terred, he clawed back a six-sec­ond deficit in four laps and won an awe­some drag race to the fin­ish which would have done jus­tice to Santa Pod in its 50th an­niver­sary year. Boult­bee Brooks chased them, clearly ador­ing his ex-jim Clark Lis­ter-jaguar.

Andy Park and Benn Simms were barely sep­a­ra­ble in His­toric FF2000, but Park spun away his un­beaten record – seek­ing a clean exit from Mur­ray’s while watch­ing Aus­tralian Mark Gold­smith’s Elfin 622 from the Clas­sic Rac­ing Car posse among which Andy Jarvis (Pal­liser) was un­catch­able – on Sun­day, re­ward­ing the tena­cious Simms, who set a new 300 cir­cuit tar­get.

Nick Fen­nell aced a very thin For­mula Ju­nior field on Satur­day, scream­ing his Ford France Lo­tus 27 past Greg Thorn­ton’s 20/22 be­fore Greg missed a gear and ro­tated. Thoughts of a dou­ble evap­o­rated when Nick pit­ted when his engine stut­tered on Sun­day, but Thorn­ton al­most threw the gift away, spin­ning be­tween Mon­treal and Palmer on the last lap. Only by squeez­ing Alex Mor­ton, du­elling with Aussie Marty Bullock in the fi­nal sec­onds, did he keep them be­hind.

De­spite miss­ing sec­ond gear off the start and be­ing en­gulfed both days, pole­man Gra­ham Pat­tle won the

By-box Tour­ing Car rounds in his Lo­tus Cortina. De­fend­ing cham­pion Si­mon Benoy (Imp) led for a lap on Sun­day, when Neil Wood – whose im­mac­u­late Ford Anglia’s throt­tle link­age had dis­in­te­grated on Satur­day – looked to have Pat­tle beaten. Hav­ing repassed him bril­liantly into Riches, Wood stayed ahead un­til his engine cut out mo­men­tar­ily on the fi­nal lap. “I’m gut­ted, but it was a great race,” said Neil.

Even start­ing from the back on Satur­day to con­serve his gear­box, Clas­sic Club­mans king Mark Char­teris was un­beat­able. Spencer Mccarthy led the chase on day one but a quick stop for a flap­ping front mud­guard to be re­moved dropped him to fifth on Sun­day. He charged back to third be­hind Mark Hales (Cen­taur) while Barry Webb com­pleted an Ff1600-en­gined dou­ble over Rachel Green (de­but­ing the D-tech team’s unique Pen­fold) af­ter Clive Wood’s week­end woes resur­faced.

Once clear of Ian Pear­son’s URS FF2000 Van Diemen there was no stop­ping Si­mon Jack­son (Chevron B43) in Clas­sic F3. Paul Dib­den com­pleted the podium each day in the lo­cally-built ex-david Sears Argo JM6. Halted by a bro­ken throt­tle re­turn spring on Satur­day, Hugh Price (Chevron B38) shot from the back to fifth in race two, split­ting the Van Diemens of Chrisses Lord and Levy. Af­ter two grip­ping 1600cc F3 con­tests, Adrian Lan­gridge (ex-bar­rie Maskell Das­tle) and Glenn Eagling (ex-mo Har­ness En­sign) shared the hon­ours.

Rob Bee­bee’s joy­ous B8 week­end was com­pleted with com­fort­able wins in both All­com­ers tus­sles, run con­cur­rently with the tin-tops. Cana­dian Pete Hall­ford’s thun­der­ous Senna Straight passes in his Chevro­let Corvette would have im­pressed his Amer­i­can neigh­bours’ 96th Bomb Group to which RAF Snet­ter­ton Heath was home dur­ing WW2.

Grant topped very tight His­toric FF1600 out­ing

Lewis (r) took Archie Scott Brown win in stun­ning Lis­ter

Boult­bee Brooks/bee­bee Chevron cleaned up in the Guards Tro­phy

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